India's first Grass Conservatory in Uttarakhand:
Why in the news?
India’s first Grass Conservatory was launched by the research wing of the Uttarakhand forest department in Ranikhet of Almora district.
- This conservatory is funded under the Central Government’s CAMPA (Compensatory Afforestation Fund Management and Planning Authority) scheme and is developed by the research wing of the Uttarakhand Forest Department.
- The research wing of the Uttarakhand forest department took 3 years to develop the conservation area of the Grass Conservatory project.
- The first Grass Conservatory project in India has been established in an area of 2 acres.
- The conservation area houses around 90 different grass species while displaying important ecological, scientific, medicinal, and cultural information related to grass species ‘All Flesh is Grass’.
- There are seven different sections of grasses in the conservation area namely medicinal, aromatic, fodder, ornamental, agricultural grasses, and religious importance.
India’s first Grass Conservatory:
- India’s first Grass Conservatory project aims at creating awareness about the importance of grass species, promoting conservation.
- Grasses play a key role in Carbon Sequestration during which grasses store most of the absorbed carbon underground.
- During a forest fire, carbon stored in trees' information cells of biomass gets released into the atmosphere. Whereas, during a fire in grasslands, the grass species store the carbon underground.
- Tiger grass or Broom grass (scientific name Thysanolaena Maxima) is an important fodder grass.
- It is found in ravines, steep hills, and sandy banks of rivers upto an altitude of 2,000 m in Uttarakhand.
- Elephant or Napier grass (Pennisetum Purpureum) is an excellent pasture fodder.
- It is a good contour hedgerow.
- It is used for firebreaks, windbreaks in paper pulps production and charcoal, biogas, and bio-oil.
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